Leadership & Staff

Our leadership and staff are dedicated professionals from a range of backgrounds including education, child development, social work, and youth development.

Office of CEO & Vice Presidents

Bela Mote
Bela Moté

Chief Executive Officer

Sonja Crum Knight
Sonja Crum Knight

Chief Programs & Impact Officer
312.243.7300, x243

Terri Connor Brankin
Kelly Powers

Chief Operating Officer
312.243.7300, x265

Victoria Small
Tara Harper

Chief Development Officer 312.243.7300, x267

Juleigh Ruby
Ashley Nazarak

Vice President of Scaling & Dissemination
312.243.7300, x242

Victoria Small
Victoria Small

Vice President of Finance 
312.243.7300, x220

Juleigh Ruby
Laura Hool

Director of Strategic Initiatives
312.243.7300, x162

Juleigh Ruby
Abby Ristow

Vice President of People & Culture
312.243.7300, x162

Juleigh Ruby
Juleigh Ruby

Executive Assistant to the President & CEO
312.243.7300, x162

Leadership Circle

Alicia Castañeda Rodriguez

Director of Family Engagement & Support
773.521.1600, x128

Aisha Williams

Director of Contract Management
312.243.7300, x353

Azucena “Susy” Gonzalez

Senior Director of Community Based Programs
312.243.7300 x230

Brenda Berman

Director of Program Marketing & Communication
312.243.7300, x217

Julissa Cruz

Director of Community-Based Advocacy
312.243.7300, x118

Kenny Riley

Director of Out of School Time Programs
773.521.1600, x123

Michele Black

Senior Director of Programs and Impact Operations
312.243.7300, x212

Tineasha Ellis

Senior Accountant
312.243.7300 x239

Staff Education & Background

Our staff works collaboratively through an interdisciplinary approach to relation-based practice to best meet the needs of those we serve.

The Carole Robertson Center’s programs are delivered by a workforce representative of those served. This workforce, at all levels within the organization, includes community residents, former program parents, and alumni.

Want to work with us?

View job opportunities

Preschool Teachers

Hold Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in early childhood education or child development and Illinois Professional Educator Licenses with Bilingual or English as a Second Language endorsement.

Family Support Specialists

Hold Bachelor’s or Master’s degrees in Social Work or Human Services.

Infant & Toddler Teachers

Hold Bachelor’s degrees in early childhood education or child development and the Infant Toddler Credential.

Staff Across Our Organization

Teaching, Family Support, & Direct Service Staff

Languages Spoken


Believe in Community 1st

Learn More About How Sustainable Education Creates Stronger Communities

We’re proud to be part of Little Village and Lawndale. Find out more about how you can be part of our programs.

Get Involved

Since 1976, the Carole Robertson Center for Learning has been dedicated to educating, enriching, and empowering children and families through comprehensive child and family development programs.